“Public law of national defense” by J.-C. Vidalin

(BRUSSELS2) Works on defense law are rare enough to be reported and commented on (since Bernard Chantebout’s “defense law”… in 1972). The author – who is a lecturer in public law at the University of Grenoble and teaches as part of the Master 2 “International Security and Defense” – covers the subject, from state means of defense to its agents in passing. by the constitutional organization and the administrative organization, the technical means and the liability regime.

A right where Europe has little influence.

Defense law still remains strongly inclined to the exercise of sovereign jurisdiction and European law has relatively little influence there. “ Even if they do not exclude provisions relating to national defense, the European treaties cannot be considered as treaties constituting military legal obligations he explains. If since 1992 and the Maastricht Treaty, " Member States draw the outlines of a common foreign and security policy (…) all of these provisions do not constitute a European military alliance ". Two exceptions can however be noted which “have undermined the principle of community incompetence in military matters »: access to certain military jobs is subject to the principle of equality imposed by Community law, the opening of public defense contracts.

NB: the author does not, however, take into account the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty which changes the situation slightly, in my opinion, by introducing solidarity clauses.

A prerogative of the President of the Republic.

Interesting passage (in my opinion), that of the relations between the President of the Republic and the Prime Minister within the framework of the Fifth Republic. We can thus see that even if the term “reserved domain” does not exist at the legal level, the President of the Republic, formally, “chief of the armies” exercises this magistracy politically, in particular through his particular General Staff. and the different links that are created between it and the Army General Staff. In this, France is an exception in Europe. In most other countries, it is the Prime Minister who exercises this power. The only resemblance is… in the United States.

(Nicolas Gros-Verheyde)

• "Public law of national defense” by Jean-Christophe Videlin (Éditions Bruylant 2009, 316 pages, 60 euros).

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).

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